I was in a crazy good mood today. Downright chipper.
There was a time when I would have analyzed that to death. You know, what clicked today that doesn’t click on other days?!
I’m so over that shit.
Instead, I’d rather just enjoy that it was good. But I did notice a nice little byproduct.
Because I was happy, I was more inclined to chat with … well, everyone. The cashier at the store, the girl who made my burrito for dinner, strangers here and there who just happened to be within earshot.
I was charming. I was goofy. I was infectiously cheerful. At the end of each short little conversation, the other person was smiling. Ear to ear.
So I started thinking.
Right now I’m still undercover. Which is to say, I look like a guy even though I identify as a female. People aren’t thrown by my gender identity because they think my frame and my gender match.
I often fear that when I come out, people will freak out. Given my very male build, I fear I’ll easily attract judgmental and tacky attention. Even hate.
But maybe what really matters is just being nice.
Even if there’s a moment when others don’t know quite how to process what they see in my appearance, maybe if I’m pleasant and cheerful people will react to that and not some dumb-ass social expectation of body shape. Maybe kindness trumps all.
I think it does much of the time.
Don’t get me wrong. People can be hateful. Trans men and women still live under the very real threat of violent reactions for just trying to be ourselves. There are a lot of assholes out there who deal with complex topics like playground bullies.
I’m not trying to paint some blithe picture that if we all hold hands and sing a happy song all the mean people in the world will start being nice. I’m not that naive.
But I believe in the power of kindness. I believe a smile can stir another person’s heart. Sure, there are hateful morons who won’t be swayed by pleasant words, but there are a lot of other people who might be a little more receptive.
Besides, being hateful, defensive or scared won’t get us (trans or otherwise) anywhere. But kindness. Kindness could change the world … or at least your little sliver of it, even if only for a moment.
Tell me that’s not powerful.